No decision yet in Kulbhushan Jadhav case: Pakistan
Earlier in the day, reports in the Pakistani media cited sources as saying that the Pakistan Army Act would be amended to allow Jadhav, a former Indian Navy officer, to appeal to a civilian court.Updated: Nov 14, 2019 02:03 IST
The Pakistan Army on Wednesday dismissed media reports about amendments to a military law to allow Kulbhushan Jadhav, an Indian sentenced to death by a military court, to file an appeal in a civilian court.
Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor, the military’s chief spokesman, tweeted that “various legal options” were being considered to review the death sentence given to Jadhav, and that a decision is yet to be made in the matter.
Earlier in the day, reports in the Pakistani media cited sources as saying that the Pakistan Army Act would be amended to allow Jadhav, a former Indian Navy officer, to appeal to a civilian court. The reports further said this was being done in line with a judgement of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which had directed Pakistan in July to review the conviction and sentence given to Jadhav.
“Speculations for amendment in Pak Army Act to implement ICJ verdict regarding convicted Indian terrorist Cdr Kulbushan Jadhav are incorrect. Various legal options for review and reconsideration of the case are being considered. Final status shall be shared in due course of time,” Ghafoor tweeted.
There was no word on the development from Indian officials. A person who declined to be identified said, “We have only seen press reports on this matter and there is nothing formal from Pakistan.”
The media reports had said the proposed amendment of the Pakistan Army Act was the first step in complying with the ICJ’s direction to let Jadhav appeal against the military court’s ruling.
Jadhav was tried by a field general court martial in Pakistan under the Pakistan Army Act, which bars any intervention by civilian courts.
On September 2, Pakistan had granted India consular access to Jadhav, 49, for the first time since his arrest in 2016. The charge d’affaires of the Indian mission in Islamabad met Jadhav at a “sub-jail” in Rawalpindi. Pakistani officials were present at the meeting, which was recorded. Since then, Pakistan has said there are no plans to grant further consular access.
The ICJ ruled in July that Pakistan had violated Jadhav’s rights under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and stayed his execution while calling on Pakistan to take all measures for an “effective review and reconsideration” of his conviction and sentence, including “enacting appropriate legislation”.
Jadhav was arrested by Pakistani security agencies in Balochistan in March 2016 and charged with involvement in spying. In April 2017, Pakistan announced he had been given the death sentence by a military court. India rejected the allegations against Jadhav and said he was kidnapped by Pakistani operatives from the Iranian port of Chabahar, where he was running a business.